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MS Mac chief moves to head up mobile device development

Ten year trusty given Pocket PCs, Handhelds and mobile phones to play with

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When Microsoft was saying how great it was to be developing Office for Mac OS X last week, the mouthpiece from the Mac Business Unit was, we noted, "acting." Now all becomes clear - former general manager of the unit Ben Waldman has now popped up as VP of the Microsoft Mobile Devices Division. The what? Well, it seems this division represents a strengthening of the mobile and wireless development being carried out under the banner of Bob Muglia's Business Productivity Group, so it's a different, parallel development track to the CE operating system development being carried out within Jim Allchin's platforms group. Muglia has the productivity and BackOffice apps, so device/appliance work carried out in his group is more clearly associated with server-based applications. Waldman is a career Microsoftie, joining straight from Harvard in 1989, leading the Windows Office 97 development team and then founding the Mac Business Unit three years ago. His brief now is to "lead design, development and marketing of software for mobile devices such as Pocket PCs, Handheld PCs and mobile phone products." Given that there's not exactly a gigantic retail market for these, nor is there likely to be, we'd guess Waldman will be doing a lot of schmoozing with wireless service providers, OEMs and handset manufacturers. ®

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